Leucas cephalotes (Roth) Spreng., Syst. Veg. 2: 743 1825. (Syn: Leucas capitata Desf.; Phlomis cephalotes Roth);
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The species is very distinct from other species that it has single terminal compact head-like verticillaster with numerous closely overlapping bracts which concoel most of the calyx, and only one or two flowers may be seen coming out at a time, one or two floral leaves emerging from top of the head. The leaves are ovate to lanceolate in shape. Plant is up to 1 m tall with hispid stems
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TAXONOMIC STUDY OF THE GENUS LEUCAS R (Bangladesh- 2005)- (Keys- Leucas biflora, cephalotes, indica (syn. of Leucas lavandulifolia Sm. as per The Plant List), zeylanica, ciliata, aspera, vestita & mollissima (syn. of Leucas decemdentata var. decemdentata as per The Plant List)
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Flora of Medak District, Andhra Pradesh, India By T. Pullaiah, Chintala Prabhakar, B. Ravi Prasad Rao (Description & Keys- Leucas biflora, stricta, cephalotes, aspera, zeylanica & nutans

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Plant Wealth of the Lower Ganga Delta: An Eco-taxonomical Approach, Volume 2 By Kumudranjan Naskar(Description & Keys- Leucas lavendulaefolia (lavandulifolia), biflora var. procumbens, aspera, nutans & cephalotes

Flora of Pakistan (Description & Keys- Leucas nutans, cephalotes, aspera, urticifolia, hyssopifolia, mollissima (syn. of Leucas decemdentata var. decemdentata as per The Plant List & lanata

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The flowering annual herb Leucas cephalotes is a common weed which also has uses as an edible vegetable and herbal remedy. It has many common names, including guma, dronpushpi or drona puspi, and tou xu bai rong cao. It is a common plant across Asia from China to the Indian subcontinent.

L. cephalotes springs up in cultivated fields as a weed, especially after a period of rain. It is collected for use as a leafy vegetable in rural areas. It is cultivated itself for its medicinal uses and is readily available in markets. One of the plant’s most common historical uses has been as a treatment for snakebite. It is also steeped in water which is then used for bathing and for washing livestock.

(From Wikipedia on 24.8.13)

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After photographing this plant from fields outside Jim corbett and identifying it as Leucas cephalotes (Roth) Spreng., I noticed that the species although very distinctive is not represented on Flowers of India. Next I checked our database and realised that though several uploads have been suggested as L. cephalotes, they mostly turned out to be some other species.

The species is very distinct from other species that it has single terminal compact head-like verticillaster with numerous closely overlapping bracts which concoel most of the calyx, and only one or two flowers may be seen coming out at a time, one or two floral leaves emerging from top of the head. The leaves are ovate to lanceolate in shape. Plant is up to 1 m tall with hispid stems.


Thanks Sir for this upload, I thought this is a common plant, strange to know that this is not represented on the forum. …I will share my pics of the same from Panipat and Morni Hills. ….anyway, thanks a lot for your upload from the latest tour….hope to see many more……


A few uploads earlier identified as Leucas cephalotes:
Leucas (from …)

Pl. correct if any of the above post is wrongly identified.


One uploaded by … is clearly not L. cephalotes. It appears L. aspera

One by … may be but bracts are not clear from distant shot



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Leucas cephalotes (Roth) Spreng., Syst. Veg. 2: 743. 1825
The species is very distinct from other species that it has single terminal compact head-like verticillaster with numerous closely overlapping bracts which concoel most of the calyx, and only one or two flowers may be seen coming out at a time, one or two floral leaves emerging from top of the head. The leaves are ovate to lanceolate in shape. Plant is up to 1 m tall with hispid stems
Photographed from Jim Corbett in October


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Request to id : 2 posts by 2 authors. Attachments (1).

Pics taken in Pench National park


Leucas aspera I hope.


Leucas aspera (Willd.) Link should have (ref. FoC) –

  • densely hispid many flowered globose verticillaster
  • hispid linear bracts as long as calyx
  • oblique calyx mouth, calyx hispid outside, teeth straight-triangular-spinescent apex
This species is not Leucas aspera (Willd.) Link. This species is L. cephalotes (Roth.) Sprengel.


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Leucas aspera (pansi-pansi) : 2 posts by 2 authors. Attachments (3)
On 7/9/08 at Gandipet, Hyderabad, AP. I hope Id is correct.


Leucas aspera (Willd.) Link should have (ref. FoC) –

  • densely hispid many flowered globose verticillaster
  • hispid linear bracts as long as calyx
  • oblique calyx mouth, calyx hispid outside, teeth straight-triangular-spinescent apex
This species is not Leucas aspera (Willd.) Link.
This species is same as efi thread


This is recorded from Panipat..

I hope this is Leucas cephalotes, please validate/correct..


Thank you Sir for sharing, it does look like the group images of Leucas cephalotes (Roth) Spreng.


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